FREE WEBSITE ARTICLES
Free Web HostingFree Blog Hosting Find the Best Free Web Hosting Cheap vs Free Web Hosting Free Website Builder Free Website Templates What Is Free Web Hosting? Pros and Cons of Free Hosts Why Build a Free Website? Get Free Google Adwords Credit From Your Web Host Get Free Yahoo Ad Credits From Your Web Host Free Forum Hosting Free PHP Hosting Free File Hosting Free Domain Hosting Free Photo Hosting Free Video Hosting
Webmaster TopicsShared Web Hosting Image and File Hosts How to Make Money Online Subdomains vs Subfolders WordPress vs. Blogger Domain Names Shared vs. Dedicated IP Address Windows vs. Linux Web Hosting Database Web Hosting Canada/UK Web Hosting Plesk vs. Ensim vs. cPanel How Reliable is Your Web Host?
eCommerce WebsitesBuild an eCommerce Site Accept Credit Cards Online Best Domain Names Best Shopping Carts Free Shopping Carts Merchant Accounts SSL Certificates Payment Gateways
CMS Software ReviewsDrupal Hosting Review Best Joomla! Hosting Mambo Web Hosting Review phpBB Forum Hosting Review Plone CMS Hosting Review TYPO3 CMS Review Wordpress Blog Software Review Content Management Systems (CMS) Best Xoops Hosting Open Source CMS
Other Hosting ServicesDedicated Servers VPS/Multiple Domain Hosting What is Cloud Computing?
Online merchant accounts work much like retail accounts. This article has defines what a merchant account is and has information on what features to look for in a merchant account, how to find a merchant account, and fees associated with merchant accounts.
There are several different kinds of merchant accounts. Continue this article to learn more about them.
What Is a Merchant Account?
Most merchants with a storefront have a retail merchant account. This is the account that allows them to accept not only cash and checks that they deposit into their bank account, but also credit card charges and debits. In effect, it enables the merchant to engage in cashless commerce, with the account geared for the merchant's daily revenues. Services included in this type of merchant account include a Point of Sales (POS) system: the terminal for processing credit card transactions by swiping the physical card on site.
Cashless commerce processing is essential for companies that want to engage in eCommerce. Short of waiting for checks in the mail, there isn't much other choice. The answer is an Internet merchant account. With these accounts, a dedicated payment gateway over the Internet is set up to handle credit card transactions made through an eCommerce website. See the article "Payment Gateways."
Other Features to Look For
Besides the basic services, there are other elements of the merchant's account that are important to check:
How to Find a Merchant Account
Merchant accounts are offered by companies that specialize in this particular field - like MerchantAccount.com, through banks - like JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo, and through payment sites like PayPal or Google Checkout.
Here is a summary of some of the fees. In general, the fees include a percentage of monthly transactions plus a charge per transaction.
Wells Fargo has a $99.00/location set-up fee, a $35.00/month service fee; a $40/year "annual compliance support fee"; a $7.50/month statement billing fee for paper statements; a 2.40% charge on gross credit card sales and non-pin debit card sales, charges for each authorization attempt; a chargeback fee; a voice address verification fee; and additional charges for Authorize.net, CyberSource, and PayPal PayFlow.
Of course, you should do more research before making a choice, but even with this general information, you can see that the choice of merchant account provider may make a significant difference in your bottom line.
Related Article: Accept Credit Cards Online >>